CI Investments launches liquid alternative ETFs

CI Investments (CI) has launched a suite of three Liquid Alternatives ETFs on the Toronto Stock Exchange. 

The new ETFs are:

• CI Lawrence Park Alternative Investment Grade Credit ETF (common units,TSX: CRED; US$ common units,TSX: CRED.U) 
• CI Marret Alternative Absolute Return Bond ETF (common units,TSX: CMAR; US$ common units,TSX: CMAR.U), and
• CI Munro Alternative Global Growth ETF (TSX: CMAG).

The ETFs mirror the strategies of CI's liquid alternative mutual funds, which were launched in November 2018 following the adoption of the Canadian Securities Administrators' "alternative mutual funds" proposals. The funds have been well received, attracting over USD1.1 billion in assets under management (as of 31 December, 2019).

"Our liquid alts are sophisticated and innovative strategies that offer distinct benefits for investor portfolios, including the potential for enhanced returns, capital preservation and reduced correlation to traditional asset classes," says Kurt MacAlpine, Chief Executive Officer of CI Financial Corp., parent company of CI. "In launching these ETFs, we are making these unique mandates and our investment management expertise available to a wider range of investors, who can choose the investment structure they prefer.

"At CI, we are very excited about the potential for alternative investments, and we intend to build on our leadership in liquid alts as we continue to enhance our product lineup and modernise our asset management business."

CI Financial announced a new strategic direction in November 2019 in which the firm is focusing on three priorities: modernising its asset management business; expanding its wealth management platform; and globalising the firm. In addition to liquid alternatives, CI has recently launched an environmental, social and governance (ESG) mandate and a high-interest savings mandate, both in mutual fund and ETF structures.

Liquid alternatives incorporate certain hedge fund investment strategies such as short-selling, leverage and derivatives. "Liquid" refers to the investment vehicle itself – a security that can be bought and sold on a daily basis, while "alternative" relates to non-traditional investment strategies.